Sep 10, 2019 11:00 AM


Outside magazine calls Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) nurse practitioner Cassidy Doucette a “super commuter” for riding her bike to work for the past nine years. The magazine recently highlighted her, along with others around the country who walk, bike, and even jet-ski to work.

Between road construction, traffic jams, and struggling to find parking, driving to work at the University of Utah (U of U) can be a major source of stress. Doucette turned this negative into a positive by choosing an active form of transportation.

Doucette says working as an oncology nurse practitioner can be hard emotionally and physically, and her morning bike ride prepares her for the long shifts at the hospital.

“I love the time outside—which is a very powerful form of medicine for me—as well the physical and mental benefits that moving my body provides. It’s a good way to start my morning energized and fresh.”

cassidy doucette on her bike

Doucette rides across campus, enjoying the landscaping and mountain views. Her destination, HCI, happens to sit at the highest elevation of any building on the U of U campus, so it’s uphill all the way in the morning.

“Going uphill on the way to work is way nicer now that we have a locker room with showers!” she says. “It’s also nice that I end my day with an all-downhill cruise.”

Doucette encourages other employees to try commuting by bike. She says e-bikes can be a good option for those who live farther away from campus or who need help getting up the hills.You save money on parking and gain the benefits of moving your body first thing in the morning.” And, of course, biking instead of driving helps improve air quality in the Salt Lake Valley.

You don’t have to be a serious cyclist to bike to work, Doucette says. “You don’t have to wear spandex and ride super-fast. There are many bike lane routes around the city. And it is way more enjoyable than sitting in traffic.”

Visit the Utah Department of Transportation’s TravelWise site to learn about biking to work and other forms of active transportation.

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